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Jihadism, Sectarianism and Politics in a Changing Middle East

An exploration of sectarianism, Islamism, and jihadism in the contemporary Middle East. 

The emergence and growth of sectarian Islamist militant organizations, whether Sunni or Shia, is deemed to be the fruit of the emerging radical interpretations of the concept of jihad, and the evolution of Islamism in general. The main objective of this book is to help the reader understand the complex religio-political scene in today’s Middle East and the ideological principles and agendas of influential movements, whose beliefs and actions constitute a serious threat to cultural diversity in the region. It addresses the doctrinal tenets associated with the emergence of influential Islamist organizations and the challenges encountered by the culturally diverse populations that surround them. This book also delves into the historical events that have shaped the Middle East as we know it today. It further examines the key factors behind the rise of the most influential sectarian-guided, jihadi-based extremist groups in the recent years


276 pages | 6 1/4 x 9 1/2

History: Middle Eastern History

Political Science: Diplomacy, Foreign Policy, and International Relations

Religion: Islam

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction 7
Part I Sectarianism 13
2. Sectarianism: Concept and Characteristics 15
3. Emergence and Development of Sectarianism in the
Islamic History 19
4. Cultural Diversity at Stake 33
Part II Jihad and Jihadism 43
5. Jihad: Term and Concept 45
6. Jihad as a Classical Notion 48
7. Jihad and the Sect: Sunni and Shia Interpretations 60
8. Salafi-Jihadism 66
9. Jihad and Militancy 78
Part III Islamism and Salafism 83
10. Foundations and Core Objectives 85
11. The Struggle for an Islamic System 103
Part IV The Rise of Modern Middle East:
Aspirations and Challenges 113
12. The Collapse of Ottoman Empire and the Emergence of
Nationalism 115
13. Sykes-Picot and the Development of National Borders 122
14. Post-Independence: States in Turmoil 129
15. Arab Spring 138
16. Political Islam and the Islamization of Popular Uprisings 142
Part V Sectarian Extremism 151
17. Sectarianized Politics and Religionized Extremism 153
18. Politico-Sectarian Roots of Contemporary
Islamist Extremism 165
Conclusion 189
Note on Transliteration 192
Glossary 194
Appendix 223
Notes 241
Bibliography 261
Index 271

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